Jermaine Taylor, Seth Tarver and Phil Jones have all been waived as the Wolves' roster now stands at 17 players, 14 of those players are on fully guaranteed contracts, 1 is on a partial guarantee and the other 2 are training camp invites.
So, that means the Wolves have one roster spot left and three players looking to 'stick'. With Rubio & Love both out until December the Wolves only have 12 healthy bodies, I'd say it's almost certain that one of these players signs on (at least until December/January).
Let's take a look at these three players...
1.) Will Conroy, Point Guard
--Conroy is the player with the partially guaranteed contract, that partial guarantee being $100,000. With Rubio out until (at least) mid-December/early-January, Conroy has a decent chance to make the team. That's not the only thing he has going for him: his best friend is the Wolves' new starting shooting guard, Brandon Roy. The Timberwolves currently have Luke Ridnour, J.J. Barea, Malcolm Lee and Alexey Shved at point guard (or capable of playing point guard). With Ridnour struggling with a bad back, J.J. Barea's 2011-12 campaign that was plagued with injuries--the same going for Malcolm Lee, they may retain Conroy.
2.) Mike Harris, Forward
--Harris is a 6'6" forward who plays both the three and the four, the Timberwolves have been rumored to be looking for another wing (Mickael Pietrus and Michael Redd have been on their radar), with Kevin Love out he could also provide depth as a deep reserve at that four spot. This is a player that Rick Adelman is very familiar with. Harris played for the Houston Rockets when Rick was the head coach, in '07-'08, '09-'10 and '10-'11. Altogether he played 29 games for the Rockets through those three seasons. He also played for the Washington Wizards in '09-'10 for 5 games. Being "Adelman's guy" could land him that final spot.
3.) Chris Johnson, Center
--Lastly, a name that some might know: Chris Johnson. Johnson is the youngest of these three (Conroy & Harris both being 29) at 27. He's got two years NBA experience, in '10-'11 he played for the Boston Celtics (4 games) and the Portland Trailblazers (10 games). In '11-'12 he played for the New Orleans Hornets (7 games) and the Portland Trailblazers (20 games). In 2011 Johnson was named to the All-NBA D-League 1st Team, the NBA D-League Defensive Player of the Year, to the NBA D-League All-Defensive 1st Team as well as an NBA D-League All-Star. If the Wolves didn't have Stiemsma I'd say Johnson was a lock to make this squad. With Kevin Love out, the Wolves have Derrick Williams, Dante Cunningham, Lou Amundson, Nikola Pekovic and Greg Stiemsma in their frontcourt. The Wolves coule probably make it without another big. However, if I had to choose between these three players, I'd probably want Chris Johnson. An interior presence that can block shots, rebound and get the occasional putback, he can also play both frontcourt positions. Greg Stiemsma & Nikola Pekovic both had foot problems last season (plantar fasciitis & bone spurs) Johnson would certainly be an insurance policy in the frontcourt, being that after those two Lou Amundson is the only other player that can play center (beyond the injured K-Love).
The case can be made for any of these players, they all fill a need, or have an 'in' (Conroy w/Roy & Harris w/Adelman) and they're all capable players that provide that 'insurance policy' on the bench, should we lose any other players to injuries.
Who would you keep? Sound off in the comment section below! That's all for now, thanks for reading HOWL and GO WOLVES!